Jeff Berlin overdubs himself on Norah Jones recordings?

Discussion in 'Recordings [BG]' started by SuperDuck, Jul 8, 2008.


  1. SuperDuck

    SuperDuck

    Sep 26, 2000
    Wisconsin
    I found myself on Jeff Berlin's Myspace page today. Looking at the tunes that he has hosted, I saw "Creepin' In", and said "Hey, that's one of the tunes from Norah Jones' album Feels Like Home, an album that I've always loved".

    I was kind of surprised to find that the song WAS "Creepin' In", with Jeff Berlin dubbing in his own playing over the song. He also did it for the lead track from that album, "Sunrise". They aren't covers, they aren't live tracks featuring Jeff Berlin, he literally just took the song from the album and dubbed himself in.

    I'm not sure what the story is here - I Googled Jeff Berlin and Norah Jones together to find some more information, but there doesn't seem to be any more information on the tunes.

    I'm assuming that he did it because he likes the tunes very much, and enjoys the songs for what they are. I guess that's cool.

    So why does it bug me that he did it? I do enjoy Feels Like Home very much, and part of what I like is the sparse, open sound, which Jeff does away with by playing busy lines in the gaps. I also think there's a certain amount of ego in dubbing yourself over someone else's music. (Anyone remember the ****storm that happened when Kenny G pulled the whole Louis Armstrong thing?)

    Does anyone know anything more about this? Did Norah Jones (or her publishing company) green light this? Are they bosom buddies? It just struck me as a really odd thing to do...

    Here's the link: http://profile.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=user.viewprofile&friendid=70223247
     
  2. JimmyM

    JimmyM

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Yamaha, Ampeg, Line 6, EMG
    Jeef Berlin seems to like to whack himself off more than your average bassist, so it doesn't surprise me that his ridiculous amounts of noodling over an already-recorded track that sounded fine as it was pop up on his Myspace.
     
  3. I like Jeff Berlin because so many people like to bash him. I've read his stuff and I consider him a friend because I've written to him and he has actually replied. I think he is as humble as most people and does things because he enjoys it and not always for attention.
     
  4. JimmyM

    JimmyM

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Yamaha, Ampeg, Line 6, EMG
    I'm not saying he's a bad guy. I'm sure he is friendly and loves his family very much. I'm just saying he's a giant egomaniac.
     
  5. Psychicpet

    Psychicpet Guest

    Mar 13, 2004
    Friend and Endorsee of Larry
    Jeff's a great player and all but that's just tacky and not to mention a breach of some copyrights I'm sure.

    It seems like a stab at a Joni+Jaco kinda thing but still, get some of the cats at the Players School to do up a quick demo OR just midi up a demo of the original, keep all the same chords in all the same spots and then blow over it, that'd seem a little less tacky to me.
     
  6. I've also seen him asking if someone could help him to meet the band Tool at one of those trade shows for his kids...You would think if he thinks he is so famous he could just call someone...I used to hang around with some guys that gossiped all the time and now I'm in my basement drinking beer making music instead of collecting bass guitars and asking "pick or fingers?"
     
  7. Darkstrike

    Darkstrike Return Of The King!

    Sep 14, 2007
    Some nice little fills every now and then, but mostly he's runing the song, IMO his tone dosn't mix well with it.

    Edit, I mean on Creepin' In. Haven't listened to the other yet.
     
  8. SuperDuck

    SuperDuck

    Sep 26, 2000
    Wisconsin
    That's an interesting reason to like someone. I'm not bashing him, however. In fact, I'm giving him the benefit of the doubt and hoping that someone knows more about the recordings than I do.
     
  9. jeff schmidt

    jeff schmidt no longer red carded, but my butt is still sore.

    Aug 27, 2004
    Novato, CA
    Odd. I'm fairly certain he isn't really jamming with Santana either.

    But . . . . if you read his profile it includes this clue as to his possible motivation for doing it -


    I think someone needs to tell Jeff there's NO solos in today's pop music.
     
  10. PocketGroove82

    PocketGroove82

    Oct 18, 2006
    Japan
    Thanks for the heads up! I just listened to the tracks you mentioned and honestly it sounds like Mr. Berlin is comping/filling just like any hot bluegrass pickin' guitar player would, if it were a happenin' riff-filled bluegrass track. It's actually pretty cool to hear a bass player do this. Lets not let our hate of the words from guy we've never met cloud our judgment. If anything, it seems to me that, he enjoys the Norah Jones' album, at least, as much as you, and he took the time to learn the songs and add his own counter melody while other just listened to it.

    Personally, I was very let down over this album when it was released since Norah Jones took the world one way with her debut release, set us up for another, and then spun us backwards with this one...I couldn't believe she brought Brian Blade back for that stuff. But I'm happy a great jazz player got paid.
     
  11. Darkstrike

    Darkstrike Return Of The King!

    Sep 14, 2007
    I actually like what he added to Sunrise.
     
  12. JimmyM

    JimmyM

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Yamaha, Ampeg, Line 6, EMG
    I realize that I will have to turn in my TB ID card when I say this, but I really don't blame producers for not wanting bass solos very often. I'm sorry, but bass as a solo instrument is not a pretty sound, and this Norah Jones clip demonstrates it all too well. Yes, I've heard bass solos that sound awesome, but by and large they're just not that pretty sounding, and I'm producing a track and a song needs a solo, I would probably look for any other instrument besides bass.
     
  13. I would never know who Jeff Berlin was if it wasn't for this site to be honest, I listened to other Jazz musicians when I was a teen like Sonny Rollins and Miles Davis...this site has turned me onto trying out the Berlins and Jaco's...I'm Canadian so Geddy was god when I was a teen.
     
  14. +1

    Part of the reason I can't stand Jaco's solo work, or most "solo" bassists.
     
  15. "now I'm in my basement drinking beer making music" << the Pinnacle of Success? :D
     
  16. PocketGroove82

    PocketGroove82

    Oct 18, 2006
    Japan
    Jimmy, the world needs less producers like you. Innovation is something cherished. If you can't appreciate a bassist of the highest order on TalkBass, then you may as well change instruments. But I agree, since popular hits=money...and greedy bastards are right all the time....right?
     
  17. TrevorOfDoom

    TrevorOfDoom

    Jun 17, 2007
    Austin, TX
    i'm behind you! the bass, in a band mix, should sit in, while still being present. to bring up the bass suddenly without changing the EQ, uhh... ugh.
    but on the other hand, we've got My Generation.
    so it can be done.
    but let's be honest... with the state of music being what it is, what says that whenever a producer gets brave enough to let a bass solo fly he'll actually be working with a competent, creative bassist?
    in a band setting? nigh-impossible IMO
    in a pop setting, 20/80.

    we'll see.

    however, back OT, Jeff Berlin overdubbing tracks? ick.
    if you want to solo and don't have a band, do what all the other cool kids do: write your own music!
     
  18. JimmyM

    JimmyM

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Yamaha, Ampeg, Line 6, EMG
    Oh, get over yourself!

    First off, I didn't say I hated ALL bass solos. Someone brought up "My Generation." Great bass solo done well. But by and large that's the way I feel. I'm sorry I don't follow your ideals to the letter, but I was under the impression that people were allowed to have their own opinions and play the way they feel. I guess we're not. I guess we all have to make music your way.
     
  19. SuperDuck

    SuperDuck

    Sep 26, 2000
    Wisconsin
    I think there's valid points on both sides of the "bass as a solo instrument" camp. I guess I would sit squarely in the middle (or perhaps lean a bit towards Jimmy's side) and say that there's a time and a place for everything. If someone wants to play solo-style bass that's cool, as long as it fits in the context of the music.

    I guess that's my beef- I don't personally feel that Mr. Berlin's playing is musically appropriate within the scope of the Norah Jones recordings. I think they were fantastically crafted songs, and if I were to pay tribute to them I learn the song and create my own version as opposed to inserting myself into someone else's art. It's akin to me adding my own notes to a Stephen King book and posting the excerpts on my blog...
     
  20. what do you have against beer and basements? ;) I watched my friends in the 80's try and make it and none of them did and I have a basement, so I'm good.

    its a pretty nice basement

     
  21. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

     
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